News Release
Release No.STELPRD4010837
ContactSamantha Evenson(701) 530-2043
DEVILS LAKE, ND, Jun 23, 2011 --

@@In celebration of National Homeownership Month, USDA Rural Development is recognizing CountryBank USA, Division of Scandia American Bank & Trust, for their efforts in helping people realize the dream of homeownership. CountryBank has been actively utilizing USDA Rural Development’s guaranteed loan program to provide customers with affordable housing options.

“By partnering with local lenders like CountryBank, we are able to extend financing opportunities to help people become homeowners,” said Jasper Schneider, USDA Rural Development State Director. “Our goal is to expand and preserve homeownership in North Dakota as it is a major part of the foundation for a stronger, more prosperous America.”

The Single Family Housing Guaranteed Program assists local lenders to serve more homebuyers with affordable rates and terms. Borrowers benefit greatly from a no down payment option, while lenders benefit from a 90% loan guarantee. A snapshot of borrower benefits includes:

    • No down payment

    • 100% financing available

    • Flexible credit score guidelines

    • No maximum purchase price limit

    • Not limited to first-time homebuyers

    • Repairs and improvements can be included in the loan

    • Competitive fixed 30-year rates

    • No monthly mortgage insurance

“The RD guaranteed program is an excellent and more affordable alternative to private mortgage insurance for lower to middle income homebuyers,” said Susan Kakela, mortgage banker at CountryBank. “Saving money for a down payment is hard for anyone in these economic times and the guaranteed loan program has made it possible for many people in rural areas to purchase their own home with limited out of pocket expenses.”

In the Devils Lake area, CountryBank USA has been the most active lender working with USDA Rural Development. Only USDA approved lenders may originate, underwrite, service, or hold the Loan Note Guarantee for Rural Development’s single-family housing guaranteed loans. A lender may request approval to participate in agency programs on a state, multi-state or nationwide basis. If you are an interested lender or an individual wanting to learn more about the housing program, please call (701) 530-2037 or visit